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Morden Dominion Post Office

352 Stephen Street, Morden, Manitoba, R6M, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1988/06/14

View of main elevations from the northeast corner of the Morden Dominion Post Office, Morden, 2005; Historic Resources Branch, Manitoba Culture, Heritage, Tourism and Sport, 2005
Main Elevations
View to the prominent clock tower of the Morden Dominion Post Office, Morden, 2005; Historic Resources Branch, Manitoba Culture, Heritage, Tourism and Sport, 2005
Detail of Clock Tower
No Image

Other Name(s)

Old Customs Building
Old Post Office
Morden Dominion Post Office
Pembina Hills Arts Council & Gallery
Ancien bureau de douane
Ancien bureau de poste
Conseil des arts et musée des beaux-arts Pembina Hills

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1913/01/01 to 1915/12/31

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/07/08

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Morden Dominion Post Office, a two-storey red brick building constructed in 1913-15, is located in Morden's historic downtown. With its lofty clock tower rising above many of the surrounding commercial and institutional buildings, the structure is now occupied by the Pembina Hills Arts Council and Gallery. The municipal designation applies to the post office and the lot upon which it sits.

Heritage Value

The Morden Dominion Post Office recalls the image of progress, prosperity and stability the federal government instilled in the buildings it constructed in select rural towns around the turn of the twentieth century. The landmark structure, with its sturdy red brick walls, mansard roofs pierced with dormers and tall corner clock tower, displays the eclectic style and standardized elements and massing then used by government architects to establish a consistent identity for federal buildings. As with others of its type, the Morden facility housed a number of functions, including the post office on the main floor and customs and inland revenue offices on the second, making it one of the busiest destinations in town. The structure is also noted for its hand-wound public clocks, believed to be among the last that remain in Manitoba.

Source: Town of Morden By-law No. 15-88, June 14, 1988

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements that define the heritage character of the Morden Dominion Post Office site include:
- the prominent location at the southwest corner of Stephen and 8th streets in Morden's downtown, surrounded by commercial and institutional buildings of the same or later vintage
- the small courtyard to the south of the building bordered by lofty spruce trees

Key elements that define the post office's eclectic exterior style, characteristic of federal government buildings from the early 1900s, include:
- the solid, sturdy facades of red brick, with the exposed portion of the foundation faced in rough limestone and metal-clad mansard roofs punctuated by hipped-roof wall dormers
- the prominent, slightly projecting clock tower in the northeast corner, four-plus storeys in height, with a pyramidal metal roof topped by a finial at its peak, stained-glass clock faces adorning each of the four sides beneath round-coved mouldings and sets of three windows below
- the variety of openings throughout, with the second level featuring tall, rectangular windows capped with dormers and the main floor featuring larger, rectangular windows with continuous brick voussoirs, limestone sills and lintels and segmental-arched transoms
- two prominent front entrances, each abutting the sidewalk with large, heavy limestone stairs and railings, with the inset double doors in brick surrounds topped by round-arched transoms with limestone keystones and brick voussoirs
- the details, including a prominent front pedimented wall dormer above a pair of windows, a notable bank of three windows on the front facade, etc.

Key elements that define the post office's internal details and finishes include:
- the formal plan, set within a rectangular form, with a slightly inset, narrower rear section
- the west entrance vestibule providing access to the spaces of the main floor through double doors and to the staircase leading to the second floor
- the intact wooden staircase with a carved balustrade on the landing area of the second floor
- the intact second-floor configuration with many doors featuring transoms, original hardware and mouldings
- the clock tower with the original bell and mechanisms, including the weights
- the details, including the original wooden plank flooring and decorative black and white tiles on the main floor, some battleship linoleum on the second floor, etc.




Recognition Authority

Local Governments (MB)

Recognition Statute

Manitoba Historic Resources Act

Recognition Type

Municipal Heritage Site

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Governing Canada
Government and Institutions

Function - Category and Type




Post Office

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Town of Morden 100-195 Stephen Street, Morden MB R6M 1V3

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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